“I have been dealing with GSI for sixteen years now and they constantly develop new and better designs and innovations.” – Peter Luyt
The first GSI silo in Zambia was erected on Wangwa farms, just north of Chisamba. The owner, Peter Luyt, was so impressed with this American company that he became a director of GSI Zambia and twelve years later, he also still remains a very proud GSI farmer. “16 years ago I bought three 1 000 tonne silos from another company and soon realised that I needed a drier for my maize and soy beans. This is how I came to know GSI. Ten years ago I ordered another three 1 000 tonne silos, but this time from GSI and five years ago I erected three more 2 250 tonne GSI silos,” he says.
Today, Peter has a total storage capacity of 14 000 tonnes, but the end is not in sight. Peter has a wide variety of operations on his farm, including poultry, a dairy and tillage, but Wangwa farms is especially known for the outstanding pig genetics they offer to small, medium and large scale farmers in Zambia. Peter is a firm believer in mixing his own rations, as well as sourcing the raw materials from his own fields. He uses soy, maize and wheat for the various feed rations and he sells he remainder in bulk in town.
His first three GSI silos had conic floors because, in those days, it was preferred since it offered extra volume. The last three silo floors are flat to effect proper aeration underneath and because it entails less civil preparation work. He chose the fine sieve floor in order to keep a wide variety of grains. Peter uses only GSI grain-moving equipment and he prefers chain conveyors. With his next expansion, GSI will make it possible for him to install reversible chain conveyors underneath his silos in order to empty silos for fumigation or to convey grain into other silos.
Next year he wants to expand his storage plant with 12 more GSI silos to hold another 30 000 tonnes. This will be sufficient to support all his latest developments and to smoothen out bottlenecks and transport. In the new development, the soy silos with the oil expeller will stand one side and the maize and wheat silos will also have a designated area. This will cut back on handling costs and ensure outstanding quality of the soy cake. Peter will then be able to draw the different grains to his feed mixing plant without bottlenecks.
Maintenance of GSI installations is a breeze and Peter’s team is well trained to perform this important task. “Between crops, we open up all the chain conveyors, strip down, clean out, blow out and reset the tension of the chains. A maintenance team of three guys are based here permanently for the day to day dedicated maintenance. I can service my own silos and we buy the spares in advance and keep it in the spares room,” he says.
Peter holds back his wheat for approximately seven months until the price is right to sell. “Sometimes I hedge 50% and sell the rest as the season goes on.”
GSI offers all farmers brilliant solutions to their grain storage challenges. For more information, contact Lanus Meyer at Lanus@gsiafrica.co.za or call him at +27 82-327-0082.